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Child Milestones

Every child is a gift of nature. Each is different and each is special. The milestones below enlist common attributes than children would learn by a certain age, but it is important to know and respect that every child would follow her own pace.


1 Month
3 Month
6 Month
9 Month
12 Month
13-18 Month
24 Month
2 Year
3 Year
4 Year
5 Year
6 Year
7-12 Year
13-16 Year

1 Month old

Physical Development

  • Average weekly weight gain is 5 to 6 ounces until 6 Months
  • Average monthly height growth is 1 inch until 6 Months
  • Head sags when not supported
  • Raises head slightly when lying on stomach

Fine Motor Development

  • Briefly regards objects
  • Hands form a fist/are tightly closed
  • Occasionally brings hands to mounth
  • Wraps fingers around object when placed in palm of hand

Language Development

  • Cries when uncomfortable
  • Makes low throaty noises
  • Occasionally brings hands to mounth

Mental Development

  • Is egocentric
  • Can distinguish tastes
  • Expects feedings at certain intervals
  • Briefly watches object

Social Development

  • Makes eye contact when alert
  • Quiets when picked up
  • Regards faces and reacts to stimulation
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3 Month old

Physical Development

  • Switches from reflex to voluntary body control
  • Sits when supported with minimum head bobbing
  • Turns head toward bright colors
  • Makes fists with both hands

  • Briefly grasps objects
  • Visually follows moving objects
  • Hands open most of the time
  • Actively holds a toy
  • Hands come together at eye level-center of visiony
  • Pulls at blankets or clothing
  • Visually follows objects 180 degrees
  • Bears weight on forearms while on tummy

Language Development

  • Makes vowel-like sounds
  • Responds with vocalization to mother's smile and voice
  • Listens to voices
  • Cries less
  • Makes cooing sounds

Mental Development

  • Is attentive for up to 15 minutes at one time
  • Follows object from side to side of body
  • Repeats actions for their own sake
  • Recognizes bottle or breast

Social Development

  • Begins to understand that hands and feet are extensions of self
  • Stop crying when parents approach
  • Responds with total body to face he recognizes
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6 Month old

Physical Development

  • Average weekly weight gain is 3 to 5 ounces for next 6 Months
  • Chews and bites
  • Reaches for objects and picks up
  • Roll from stomach to back

Fine Motor Development

  • Brings object to mouth
  • Pulls blanket off face
  • Plays with hands at center of their vision or in front of their face
  • Holds onto objects for up to 30 seconds
  • Both hands on bottle or breast
  • Knows what it is reaching for
  • Looks or goes after dropped objects
  • Transfers objects from hand to hand
  • Reaches for an object with one arm

Language Development

  • Vowels begin to be interspersed with more consonants
  • Babbles and becomes more active during exciting sounds
  • Vocalizes pleasures and displeasure

Mental Development

  • Picks up blocks briefly and directly
  • Inspects objects at length
  • Senses the relationship between hands and objects they manipulate

Social Development

  • Shows fear of strangers and excitement to familiar people
  • Laughs when head covered with towel
  • Laughs out loud
  • Holds out arms when wants to be picked up
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9 Month old

Physical Development

  • Crawls with one hand full
  • Crawls up stairs
  • Builds a tower of two blocks
  • Gets down from standing
  • Clasps hands or bangs objects together

Fine Motor Development

  • Bangs toys on surface
  • Hands to feet/feet to mouth
  • Bangs, drops, shakes toys
  • Uses both hands to play with toys
  • Bangs two objects together
  • Grasps small objects using thumb against side of index finger
  • Plays pat-a-cake/claps hands

Language Development

  • Uses words meaningfully
  • Responds to 1 or 2 words other than name
  • Imitates coughs, tongue clicking, and hissing

Mental Development

  • Fears heights, aware of vertical space
  • Beginning of intelligence, assigns symbols to events
  • Begins to show a quality of persistence

Social Development

  • Recognizes mother and self in mirror
  • Percieves mother as a serperate person; father as a seperate person probably
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12 Month old

Physical Development

  • Crawls on hands and knees
  • Birth weight is tripled
  • Walks with help
  • Drinks from a cup and eats from spoon with help
  • Sits without support

Fine Motor Development

  • Pokes with index finger
  • Lets go of objects in an awkward way
  • Reaches for objects that are close
  • With demonstration will release cube into cup
  • Places cube on cube, tries to stack objects
  • Uses finger and thumb to pick up objects that are small
  • Holds crayon in a way that allows them to color

Language Development

  • Says 2 to 8 words
  • Imitates sounds of animals
  • Controls intonations, patterns of those similar to parents

Mental Development

  • Stacks two blocks
  • Searches for a hidden object, even if he hasn't seen it hidden, but only remembers where it was last seen
  • Understands no and bye-bye

Social Development

  • Distinguishes from self and others
  • Fears strange people and places
  • Waves bye-bye, plays patty cake and peek-a-boo
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13-18 Month old

Physical Development

  • Soft spot on top of head closes
  • Abdomen protrudes
  • Imitates housework
  • Needs 10 to 12 hours of sleep each night
  • Walks without help

Fine Motor Development

  • Turns more than one page at a time
  • Builds tower of two cubes
  • Removes lid from shoe box to retrieve toy
  • Holds foot out to put shoe on
  • Holds two cubes in one hand
  • Scribbles on paper
  • Removes both socks and shoes
  • Builds tower of three or four cubes
  • Places two shapes in a puzzle
  • Puts several blocks into a cup/container

Language Development

  • Says 4 to 6 six words at 15 months, 10 or more at 18 months
  • Points to desired objects
  • Vocalizes voice up and down

Mental Development

  • Understands relationship between object and use
  • Beginning concept of "up" and "down"
  • Recognizes familiar pictures

Social Development

  • Feeds self with hands
  • Enjoys being the center of attention
  • Prefers certain people to others
  • Begins to adjust to babysitteri
  • Likes to look at pictures
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24 Month old

Physical Development

  • Average yearly weight gain is 4 to 6 pounds
  • Gait is steadier and more like an adult

Fine Motor Development

  • Strings three beads
  • Snips paper in one place with scissors
  • Unzips zipper
  • Draws in a straight line
  • Separates pop beads in one place
  • Turns pages one at a time
  • Places three shapes in a puzzle

Language Development

  • Forms short sentences with vocabulary of about 300 words
  • Uses pronouns
  • Verbalizes need for food, drink, and toilet

Mental Development

  • Refers to self by name
  • Invents new ways to play with a toy
  • Begins mental problem-solving and play
  • Has insight and forethought
  • Builds tower of 4-8 blocks

Social Development

  • Dawdles
  • Is negative
  • Wants to make friends, but unsure how
  • Likes to imitate parents
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2 Years old

Physical Development

  • Birth weight is quadrupled
  • Primary teeth complete
  • Can build tower of 8 blocks
  • Copies circle from model
  • Throws ball about 4-5 feet

Fine Motor Development

  • Removes screw on cap from bottle
  • Places rings on stand in any order
  • Imitates making a train with cubes
  • Draws a straight horizontal line
  • Removes shirt, pants and shorts with help for fastners
  • Able to turn a door knob

Language Development

  • Gives first and last names
  • Enjoys rhymes and singing

Mental Development

  • Is egocentric
  • Symbolic and fantasy play
  • Begins to understand the concept of time
  • Uses symbols increasingly

Social Development

  • Separates easily from parents
  • Notices sex difference
  • Independant in toileting except for wiping
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3 Years old

Physical Development

  • Average yearly weight gain is 4 to 6 pounds
  • Begins to use scissors
  • Balances on one foot for 5 seconds
  • Runs easily
  • Rides a tricycle
  • Uses a toilet

Fine Motor Development

  • Draws circles, end point within one-half inch of beginning
  • Imitates making a bridge with cubes
  • Demonstrates hand washing
  • Cut paper from one side to the opposite side with scissors

Language Development

  • Vocabulary of about 900 words
  • Talks in sentances of about nine words
  • Asks many questions
  • Repeats common rhymes
  • Says sounds a, m, b, p, n, l, w

Mental Development

  • Repeats three numbers
  • Still engages in fantasy play
  • Builds tower of 9-10 cubes

Social Development

  • Less negative
  • More friendly
  • Begins to understand taking turns and sharing
  • Begins to learn meaning of simple rules
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4 Years old

Physical Development

  • Balances on one foot for 4 - 8 seconds
  • Jumps from step
  • Cuts straight with scissors
  • Copies a circle

Fine Motor Development

  • Unbuttons large buttons
  • Winds up toy by turning knob
  • Cuts entire length of traced line within one-half inch of the line
  • Pulls on shorts
  • Draws a cross with intersecting lines
  • Begins to show a hand preference
  • Strings 4 to 5 beads
  • Copies the word "Stop"
  • Draws a person with at least 8 body parts
  • Copies a diamond
  • Imitates building steps with blocks

Language Development

  • Asks question- "What, Where, Who?"
  • Speaks clearly ad is understood by non-family members
  • Gives reasonable answers to basic questions
  • Says sounds of d, g, f, k, y

Mental Development

  • Dresses and undresses with little help
  • Gives first and last name
  • Counts to 5
  • Builds a tower of 10 blocks

Social Development

  • Shows many emotions
  • Parallel play with other children
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5 Years old

Physical Development

  • Skips using alternate feet
  • Catches large balls
  • Bathes self
  • Walks backwards toe to heel

Fine Motor Development

  • Fold paper in half with edges within 1/8" of each other
  • Cuts square within 1/8" of lines

Language Development

  • Speaks clearly in sentances up to 5 - 6 words

Mental Development

  • Dresses alone
  • Counts up to 10 objects
  • Copies familiar shapes (square, circle, triangle)
  • Put objects behind, in front of, under, back, ect.

Social Development

  • Plays with boys and girls
  • Likes palying with adults or older children
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6 Years old

Physical Development

  • Climbs, skips, hops, and gallops
  • Learning to ride bikes

Fine Motor Development

  • Connects dots ith straight line
  • Touches each finger to thumb rapidly
  • Colors within lines without crossing lines
  • Imitates building a pyramid of cubes
  • Copies the word "Stop"
  • Copies a diamond

Language Development

  • Uses all types of sentance structure
  • Prints letters
  • Draws a person with at least 8 body parts
  • Imitates building steps with blocks

Mental Development

  • Able to define objects use (a spoon being something you eat with)
  • Describes objects seen in pictures
  • Recognizes shapes, numbers
  • Makes decisions easily

Social Development

  • Likes to have a best friend
  • Developing a sense of right and wrong
  • Likes small group play
  • Knows right from left
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7 - 12 Years old

Physical Development

  • Dexterity increases
  • Skates, rides bikes
  • Agility and coordination improves
  • Motor skills improve
  • Girls have sudden growth spurts

Fine Motor Development

  • Increasingly skillful with hands
  • Likes to build things
  • Fond of puzzles, board games, and cards
  • Is learning to write in cursive

Language Development

  • Thinks in concrete terms
  • Able to read and write

Mental Development

  • Curious about the function and use of objects
  • Concrete operational stage (age of relational thinking and concrete concepts)

Social Development

  • Privacy is important
  • Hero worship begins
  • Wants to be involved in clubs
  • May reject Santa Claus and Easter Bunny
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13 - 16 Years old

Physical Development

  • Body changes associated with puberty
  • Increases in height/weight
  • May become more clumsy

Fine Motor Development

  • Learning to type
  • Able to write stories
  • Able to draw a person with appropriate body parts

Language Development

  • Able to understand advanced levels of communication
  • May respond with monosyllable answers
  • High level of comprehension and vocabulary

Mental Development

  • Concerned aboud body image and function
  • Begins to develop abstract thinking and logic
  • Enjoys developing intellectual powers

Social Development

  • Concern for privacy
  • Tends to be self-conscious
  • Beginning interest in opposite sex
  • Peer groups more important than family
  • Mood swings
  • Period of conflict with parents
  • Adopt extremein mannerisms, clothing, and music, ect.
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